Minutes June 3, 2020

LPCI School Virtual Council Meeting

Accompanying slide presentation

Attendees: 56 attendees, including Superintendent Andrew Howard, Principal Aiman Flahat, Steve Bibla, LPCI Parent Council (Liz Hanson, Anna Richter, Erika Boone, Kristen Glenister, John Hiddema, Ann Moffet, Kelly Green, Julie Sole, Alex Sabharwal, Karen Barasch, Anne Marie Armstrong, Greg Speirs, Resa Eisen, Jennifer Tse)

Key Dates:

  • Week of June 8th – Locker Clean-Out (see email for specific date and time)
  • June 18th – Grade 12 Locker Clean-Out Day
  • June 18th – Virtual Athletic Banquet 7:30pm
  • June 26th – Last Day of 2019-20 School Year
  1. Superintendent Andrew Howard
    • Superintendent Howard has been joining many school council meetings virtually
    • This time period since March has been a learning curve for everyone, TDSB staff and students
    • Hope everyone is safe and healthy during these challenging times
    • Pivot for everyone – not only education but also life in general
    • School Access protocol to begin next week – staff access began this week; model for students Grade 9-12 independently with Ministry of Education (Ministry) guidelines in place, proper sanitization, wearing masks; students to pick up items and return school property items (sportswear, library books, musical instruments)
    • New info re: Covid testing; currently 3 pop-up sites in Scarborough (hardest hit region in Ontario) – may expand to other schools across the city
    • New sites opening up for voluntary testing; some may require appointment bookings
    • May 8th announcement by the Minister of Education – regarding expectations of teachers connecting and engaging with students; v. fortunate at LP to have moved the needle with remote learning and taken initiative; LP ahead of the game on this front

School reopening – currently unknown situation for September re: Covid-19

Several possible models

  • Will NOT go back to regular schooling
  • 100% remote learning
  • Hybrid-type model; system-wide timetable (semestered vs. full-year vs. year-round) – 2020-21 year possible model, amongst many
    • Quadmester – students take 2 subjects at a time over 9-week period
    • One course at a time (110 hours) per course
    • All schools going to semestered system
    • Alternate days or one week on, one week off, etc.
  • Many different models being considered at the secondary level
  • Timetables on hold for the fall until further instructions for current unknown model; in flux with teams and committees considering pros and cons of various possible models
  • Parent survey – stay tuned re: parent perspective on what would work best for your child
  • Possible to NOT have your child return in September with appropriate model around that
  • Clarity from Ministry of Education to come

Report Cards

  • Detailed info has been distributed via email re: report card distribution
  • Key messaging – whatever the students were achieving prior to March 13 will be reflected on the report, unless the remote work being done has improved their mark (ie. marks will NOT go down from March 13th grade)
  • Primary focus – on students who need assistance to pass classes to get their credits

PARENT QUESTION: John Hiddema (council member) re: timetable – is there a line drawn as to timetable decisions and surrounding structure?

Supt.Howard – LP is ready to go – decision from Ministry must be made first – direction forthcoming from the Ministry (not the Board) – currently no date

John: Structure appreciated by students for clarity by mid-August will be a huge benefit to students and parents

Supt. Howard: Agreed decisions must be made asap for fall planning

 PARENT QUESTION: (Nicole) For students going into Grade 12, how will this affect them for university applications?

Supt. Howard: No matter what model, there will be no change in structure for Grade 12 grads with respect to the 2021-21 university application process.

 PARENT QUESTION: (Mitch Wexler) Is there going to be some movement toward more virtual classroom environment with direct instruction from teachers?

Supt. Howard: Aware of private vs. public systems with respect to online instruction – synchronous (real-time) vs. asynchronous learning (not real-time) – change would not be significant between what is being provided now and what to expect in the fall – individual teachers should be addressed directly re: needs of specific students, follow up with Principal Flahat or Vice Principal – pivot and learning for staff will be in place come the fall

(Principal Flahat – considerations of the entire community must be addressed – various socioeconomic areas with various challenges, internet access, etc. – equity is the foundation of everything at the TDSB, needs must be balanced)

 PARENT QUESTION (Resa Eisen council member) – Engagement of student ideas beyond technology – opportunity offline to discuss? (dir. To Trustee Andrew Howard)

Trustee Howard: You are always welcome to contact me; perhaps include feedback in parent survey, or we will discuss offline – depends on the model directive from the Ministry of Education

  1. Chair Liz Hanson
  • VP Steve Bibla – Welcome and acknowledgement of the Grade 12 graduates with congratulations
  • Student Council Update – Ryan and Samantha – thank you for your contributions this year
    • Successful virtual student spirit events, highlights: meme contest and bake-off
    • SC elections – campaign via social media completed
    • Ryan staying on; Sam graduating
    • Foodshare Fundraiser – $10K fundraising goal – donate back to the community; currently at $1,700 – ramping up awareness – Trustee Laskin tweeted out; share the link to help students and the community
  • Principal Flahat Update
    • Great to see everyone, even if on Zoom call! Everyone is missed
    • Address to anti-black racism recent events
    • TDSB sent out messaging, anti-oppression, system moving towards true inclusive environment
    • Equity Committee has done hard work to address racialized, marginalized groups and to educate everyone to understand oppression and to ensure all students have a voice and are heard; LP has a lot to be proud of and still a lot of work to do; LP is committed to doing tough work
    • Access to school protocol/plan has been sent to all families via email as to when each student is invited to come into the school to return and/or collect items
    • Thanks to Mr. Bibla, Ms. Kelly and office staff for coordinating the plan
    • Need to minimize interaction between students (test run with Grade 9s June 9th 10am) – supervisors on site to ensure physical distancing is upheld (ie. not a time to socialize, unfortunately)
    • Go to lockers, collect items and texts, drop off texts in gymnasium, exit from door near gymnasium
    • Students must WEAR A MASK to ensure safety, use hand sanitizer on site upon arrival and departure
    • Supervision on every floor (2 staff/volunteers per floor) to monitor the procedure
    • Blocks of time for each group to access the school; if more time is needed, it will be managed outside before more students enter
    • Grade 9 – June 10, 11
    • Grade 10 – June 12
    • Grade 11 – June 15, 16
    • Grade 12 – June 18
    • Something special for Grade 12 graduates (t-shirt with names of all graduating students) to be handed out; some teachers will be on hand outside to clap and celebrate their graduating students, music playing, to acknowledge their success, lawn signs
    • NOT the time to return loaned e-devices to TDSB (all families please keep the device until September) – these are the property of the TDSB, NOT LP – note from Supt. Andrew Howard

PARENT QUESTION: Are the students coming in by last name?

Response: P. Flahat – yes, by last name and by Grade – see email sent June 2nd

  • Yearbooks – students have worked so hard on the yearbooks – all work was done on time and online using software – fall delivery due to printing delays caused by pandemic situation (Canadian company)

PARENT QUESTION – How will the Grade 12s get their yearbooks?

Answer: Something special for commencement will take place in the fall – delivery date is unknown and we cannot distribute items at this time – stay tuned for delivery dates – will need new email addresses for the grads since they will no longer have access to their TDSB email accounts – possible event to take place Thanksgiving Weekend

  • Credit rescue program – strategy to move those students over the pass mark – summer program to recover credits – plan in place with guidance, office staff to contact students who are not engaging
  • Community Service Hours – students continue collecting documentation and provide to the office upon return – 40 hours have been waived for Grade 12 students by universities (Trustee Howard)
  • Are some summatives optional? (student question) – teachers are evaluating the work they are receiving; lots of students are trying to improve their marks – these improvements will be taken into consideration for the final mark
  • When will students receive their current grade?
  • Students can ask their teacher any time where they currently stand; if an issue, reach out to Principal Flahat or Mr. Bibla or Ms. Kelly

PARENT QUESTION (Rindy): Concern for teachers – capability varies by teachers and they have done a lot – what support are we giving the teachers? Are they expected to work all summer? Do they look to the Ministry or TDSB to deliver?

Answer Principal Flahat – re: summer – no expectation for teachers to be working – summer school programs will provide some jobs – LP staff not being asked to work during the summer; virtual learning has brought staff together re: collaboration, virtual department meetings, staff meetings (where none had been happening due to the job action)

  • VP Steve Bibla – students are teaching the teachers – student council election videos; POR (position of responsibility) created for new Digital Innovation & Creativity Centre
  • Some staff are experts in Google Classroom and Brightspace – great program already in place and LP has several teachers who are helping others with the software
  • Google Classroom vs. Brightspace – 100% of teachers are on a platform (P. Flahat not in a position to mandate which platform teachers must use)
  • QUESTION: When is the last day of school/ classes? – June 26 (no change due to longer March Break)
  • Virtual Athletic Banquet June 18th  7:30pm ALL INVITED (250 max) to log in! – student-led videos, speeches, awards, hosting live event on Google Meets!
  • Virtual Classics Conference took place this past weekend (Greece trip cancelled) – Friday, Saturday and Sunday – student-led, teacher-supervised

Question:  When will be hear about placement for summer courses starting in July?

Answer: (P. Flahat) I don’t know when they will hear back; LP doesn’t manage this aspect (Liz) – form must be filled out and approved by Guidance – connect with Guidance and book time with them

  • Staffing – virtual interviews, positions of responsibility (16 hired) ie. heads of departments – all 16 position filled, as of today! Several new hires from outside of LP; new heads of Guidance, STEM, Student Success, Canadian World Studies, Student Leadership, Phys. Ed. – Principal Flahat is thrilled with the team being built at LP!
  • Building / Robotics maker space in basement
  • Enrollment is significantly up for next year – several students returning to their home school after going elsewhere
  • New teacher line-up – when will we receive announcement? – end of June
  • When is the last day kids can submit work for grades? Submitting to individual teachers – ask your teacher!

Parent Question: Can we form a committee of interested parents to move timetable for 2021 fall to semestered timetable? Can this be entertained at all?

Answer Principal Flahat – consultation piece was stopped; entire process has to begin from scratch if and when it is opened through the Secondary Review

  • Communications Julie/Marina – no update
  • Treasurer Report – Ian – website costs this year due to migration to new service, TDSB has reimbursed $1,200 of costs, STEM program fund – Liz to follow up
  • Fundraising – Anne Marie – spring fundraiser postponed
  • Wellness – Kelly – amazing job, Kelly!
  • Equity Committee – Alex – Re: situation in US – organizations are making statements/passing resolutions – Alex would like to put forward a resolution for School Counsel to make decision on:

Resolution: Be it resolved that the School Council of Lawrence Park Collegiate Institute is very concerned about the recent deaths of persons of African American ancestry by police officers in the United States as well as other related events.  We would like to express our very strong concern about this situation.  We would also like to express our commitment to the equality and human rights of persons of African ancestry and of their right to live free from violence or discrimination from those in positions of authority.

The resolution was put in the chat comments to review. No objections were raised. Two comments requested Canada to be added. Resolution approved by general consent.

Motioned by:  Alexander Sabharwal

Seconded by: Anna Richter

  • Anna – Community Updates – encourage the community to celebrate grads with the lawn sign purchases
  • Resa – Safe & Caring School Committee – nothing to report – no meeting with Steve Bibla since last meeting
  • Steve Bibla – cyber bullying, online media – school code of conduct re: online learning – continuing to address any concern
  • Greg – Facilities Improvement – Nothing to add
  • Karen – Parent Engagement – process of updating parent engagement with Board is ongoing – live survey available – only 13 questions – tdsbengage.ca – includes things like school improvement plan and how parents are consulted – survey closing some time in June
  • Jen – FSLAC – nothing to report
  • Kristen – Vice Chair – nothing to add
  • Celebrating our Grads – 295 students – no June grad will take place – Principal Flahat committed to an event this coming fall (likely Thanksgiving weekend) – keep student email addresses and parent addresses
  • Lawn Signs available for sale to all families to celebrate our grads
  • T-shirts – first year that the shirts will be paid for by the school – thank you to Principal Flahat and VP Ruth Kelly for running the survey for logo selection and details (205/295 kids voted) – all 295 shirts will be ordered and given out on June 18 at locker cleanout day for Grade 12s
  • Banner – thank you to council member Erika Boone for organizing this – will be visible on school ground for photo op!
  • Virtual Celebration – an hour event at end of June – approval forthcoming – ideas welcome!
  • School Communication – on the list for next year’s topics of importance
  1. Other News/Information (or Meeting Follow Up)
  • Thank you to Julie Sole who is graduating out and leaving school council
  • Thank you to Anna Richter for continuing on counsel this year
  • Looking for volunteers – each council role is available the following year and will go to a vote and new roles can be created to enrich student life